Shopping Tips to Keep Sodium Down
Watch out for surprising hidden sodium in common foods.
Limiting sodium is important for heart health-and keeping under a cap of 1,500 mg of sodium per day requires some shopping savvy. Use these helpful hints to guide you through the aisles.
1. Canned Beans & Tomatoes
Look for ones labeled "no-sodium" or "low-sodium." (These terms are regulated by the FDA and mean less than 5 mg and 140 mg per serving respectively.) Rinse beans before you use them to remove some of the excess sodium.
Some store-bought broth delivers close to 1,000 mg sodium/cup. Choose reduced-sodium (averaging 500 mg/cup), no-salt-added (averaging 200 mg/cup) or low-sodium (140 mg or less/cup) stock or broth. Some are lower in sodium, but not labeled as such-so compare among brands.
3. Breads & Cereals
Most store-bought breads, including rolls, pita bread and regular sandwich slices, have a significant amount of salt added to them. Compare nutrition information when choosing.
4. Meat, Poultry & Seafood
Check labels to avoid meat, especially turkey and pork, "enhanced" with a sodium solution.
Cheeses: Many cheeses, including Cheddar, feta and Parmesan, are high in sodium. Swiss cheese is naturally lower in sodium than many other varieties.